Hiking in heavy mist and imagine falling into exciting discovery trips in novels.
Or holding respect and amaze to mountains, you may be touched by “Holy Ridgelines.”
Or trace precious Agehana maraho, rewarding its incomparable beautiful shape.
Or search in cypress forest for Impatiens devolii Huang and fall in love with its unique colors and elegant shape.
Or follow pleasing symphony performed by singing birds, and let them lead you to breath-taking waterfall.
And welcome to Guanwu National Forest Recreation Area, a sweat home of mist and fog.
Location lies between Wufen township in Hsinchu and Taian township in Miaoli. It is also a vital watershed for Da-an Creek(大安溪) and Tou-Qian Creek (頭前溪). It is Guanwu National Forest Recreation Area stretching from Snow Mountain Ranges, covering hectares and rising from 1,500 to 2,500 meters above sea level. Because of mountainous area, it enjoys cool summer with average temperature of 22 centigrade degrees and cool winter with 15 centigrade degrees. Usually, dense fog and heavy mist surround this area, creating mystery atmosphere and fabulous sceneries! By the way, based on this features, this place is named after Guanwu(觀霧), meaning a wonderful site to appreciate fog in mountains. Plus, prepare enough equipment to defense coldness since the weather in Guanwu changes a lot without expectations.
Broadleaf forest and coniferous forest compose major forest in Guanwu. The last one includes red cypress(紅檜), Taiwan cypress(台灣扁柏), Taiwan Hemlock (台灣鐵杉), Taiwan Red Pine(台灣二葉松) and so on. Especially in Red-Cypress Hiking Trail, five attractive hundred-year-old red cypress trees are so giant that several persons hand each other to surround it in circle. What’s more, various flowers bloom in different season, making Guanwu full of vibrancy and surprise. In autumn, purplish pink Impatiens devolii Huang(棣慕華鳳仙花), one of rare species, blossom charmingly in cypress forests. It is so unique that attract numerous travelers to figure out what exactly is “touch-me-not” during September and so vulnerable that biologists have done a lot of work and efforts to protect it. Moreover, Guanwu forests provide plentiful species perfect inhabitants. Visitors need some kind of luck to spot squirrels flying between branches, Formosan Rock Monkey hopping in towering trees, Formosan Black Bear screwing in far distance and others unknown vivid creature hiding in forests. There are over 99 kinds of birds singing lovely chorus in Guanwu including thrushes and warblers. In creek of high elevation, Formosan Salamander (台灣山椒魚 Hynobius formosanus) freely wanders in crystal clean river. Abundant butterflies and frogs thrive in Guanwu, too. Hopefully, visitors may have the same lucky as winner lottery to glance at elegant Agehana maraho(寬尾鳳蝶) dancing in forest in Guanwu National Forest Recreation Area!
Several hiking trails have been paved, notified for different uniqueness. Here introduce must-visit spot!
Guanwu Waterfall trail:
Length: 1.5 km from Guanwu Villa
Trip: around 40 minites
Along with towering Taiwan alders, pleasing bid songs company every hikers heading to destination—Guanwu Waterfall. Hikers can hear roaring sound in distance and enjoy silk-like waterfall from observation platform. It cascades down 30 meter heights forming spectacular views touching every hiker.
Kuasishan Big Trees Trail(榛山步道)
Length: 4130 meters
Altitude: 2489 meters above sea levels
Red cypresses, Taiwan cypresses, green maples, Formosan maples and other sky-reaching tree consist forests around Kuasishan Big Trees Trails. There is home of five ancient red cypress and precious Impatiens devolii Huang(棣慕華鳳仙花), showing rich ecosystem. What’s more, it is the perfect spot to admire “Holy Ridgeline” of Snow Mountain Ranges. Serious giant mountains stretch continuously with ocean of clouds, especially touching during sunrise. What a wonderful chance to stand in front of it!
Official site: http://www1.forest.gov.tw/RA_En_JP/0200004/RA_EN-01.htm
Address : Meiyuan Village, Taian Township, Miaoli County
Tel : (037) 272-917
Opening hours : 07:00~17:00
Admission :Due to typhoon damage, the Dalu Forest Trail is temporarily closed.
Note :Guanwu is in a controlled access area. Visitors need to bring ID and apply for a permit to enter the mountain area.
Because heavy fogs usually covering mountainous area make Guanwu become extremely dangerous, tourists should leave Guanwu before 5:00 p.m in highly recommendation.